2011 Sailing Challenge

What an event that turned out to be - we couldn't have written a better script! The weather, the crews, the social events and above all, the result were all unbelievable and have made certain that the Sailing Challenge will now grow into what we have always dreamed it could be.

Congratulations to Playing Around for winning the EuroSAF Beneteau 40.7 European Championships (3rd/1st/1st) from Earsay (2nd/3rd/2nd) by two points.


2011-sailing-1.jpgThe fleet then continued south to Jersey and an inshore race then decided the final positions for the overall Le Tournoi Challenge title. This was claimed by the Earsay crew, with a final points score of just seven (2nd/2nd/1st/1st/1st).

This was a truly remarkable achievement given that the crew included two deaf adults, an interpreter and a handful of complete novices as well as some relatively experienced crew.

Event Feedback

The support that Le Tournoi are able to provide, through their corporate sporting events, is gratefully received and in particular the awareness that the Sailing Challenge has presented us with is astounding – we can’t thank them enough for their hard work and generous donation of the use of the boat. The fact that a part hearing and part hearing-impaired crew have won the event and come runners up in the Eurpoean Championship really cements Earsay’s mantra that every person, irrespective of hearing ability, can take part in every available opportunity given the right support and awareness of the community.
Mark Burby, Chairman, Earsay

We would have loved to have put a boat in this year (as you know it was always my plan). However, we saw the benefit of just taking clients out on the Oceanis for a day and I think it is a very good investment, so I would certainly hope to put a boat in, and once again sponsor a leg. We will still be involved with Le Tournoi next year so we will be involved in the planning process and we can prepare for an Orchid boat in good time. I can’t tell you how proud Sam and I were last night to be a (small) part of such a major success and we will be making as much as we can of it among our clients to get them a bit more fired up.
Allan Watts, Director - Orchid Communications

Many thanks for a great 5 days everyone of my team thoroughly enjoyed the sailing and the whole event, even Ray sent a great note thanking us and saying what a time he had despite being sick the whole way across the channel. You should be proud of what you achieved.
Tim Ringsdore, Managing Director, JT

I just wanted to drop you a quick email to say a big thank-you for letting me participate in the 2011 Le Tournoi Sailing Challenge, what an opportunity of a life-time! What a personal challenge! On both points I can put a big tick in both boxes. The event was very well organised (so please pass on my thanks to the back room team ;-) and was great value for money, how can you put a price on such a great experience!!!

Highlights for me .. seeing the stars as we crossed the English channel on a Saturday night, meeting Geoff Holt and many other inspirational people, watching the sun rise Sunday morning, participating in the sign language session, meeting so many 'like minded' people with a 'can do attitude' and sailing a racing yacht for the first time (but not the last) in my life .. should I mention the joy of winning a race woo hoo.

I would like to think I played a small part in making a difference through fund raising or participating, I certainly look forward to sharing other challenges with you in the future.
Alex McBain, Novice Crewmember, Orchid Communications Team